Kicking the can down the road: How inadequate funding dismantles data-driven education reform

There is a saying that “what gets measured, gets done,” and in 1990, our state Legislature seemed to understand this adage. That year, they passed HB 1017, which dedicated $560 million dollars over five years to implement historic education reforms including class size reduction, curriculum standards, testing, and early childhood programs. Since that time, state funding gains have severely eroded, and Oklahoma has not been able to maintain many aspects of HB 1017 including class size limits. [More...]

Fine arts education matters: how shrinking budgets deepen inequalities

Oklahomans know every student needs access to quality public education.  Unfortunately, our state has struggled to uphold this commitment.  While all areas of public education have suffered from slashed education funding over the past decade, budget cuts have hit fine… Read more [More...]

Funding postsecondary education for incarcerated Oklahomans could pay off for public safety and the budget

Oklahoma has made encouraging progress on justice reform in recent years. Reforms passed in 2016 and 2018 will slow prison population growth and spur investments in rehabilitation. While these are important steps in the right direction, criminal justice reform should… Read more [More...]

Beyond Teacher Pay: Class size matters

Last April, the Oklahoma Legislature passed HB1010xx and other revenue measures, which restored $480 million dollars of education funding.  The majority of  the new revenue is being used to fund a long-awaited pay raise for teachers.  HB1010xx also increased funding… Read more [More...]

State Question 801: Allow Building Fund Revenue for School Operations

State Question 801 will be on the ballot on November 6, 2018. Download this fact sheet as a PDF or download all five State Questions as a single PDF. Visit our 2018 State Questions and Elections page for more information on Oklahoma ballot measures and elections. … Read more [More...]

OKPolicyCast 36: Back to School (with Rob Miller)

The OKPolicyCast is hosted by Gene Perry with production help from Jessica Vazquez. You can subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, or RSS. The podcast theme music is by Zébre. If you have any questions for the OKPolicyCast, topics you’d like us to cover, or people… Read more [More...]

SQ 801 would give more flexibility, but no new funds for education (Capitol Update)

Steve Lewis served as Speaker of the Oklahoma House of Representatives from 1989-1991. He currently practices law in Tulsa and represents clients at the Capitol. It was announced by Governor Fallin last week that SQ 801 will be placed on the general… Read more [More...]

New KIDS COUNT Data Book ranks Oklahoma near the worst in the nation for child well-being

A new report shows the youngest generation of Oklahomans face far-reaching challenges. The state ranks near the bottom in the nation for most measures of child well-being, according to the 2018 KIDS COUNT® Data Book released today by the Annie… Read more [More...]

What we know – and don’t know – about the revenue bill veto challenge

In late March, on the eve of an anticipated teacher walk-out, Oklahoma lawmakers approved a series of bills intended to provide pay raises for teachers, school support staff, and state employees. To pay for the raises, lawmakers approved a number… Read more [More...]

Tulsa has better options than punitive responses to truancy and homelessness

This post is by OK Policy intern Lydia Lapidus. Lydia is a recent graduate from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs with a concentration in International Politics. In recent weeks, the Tulsa City Council has considered ordinances that… Read more [More...]